Monday Mornings with Madison

Is Your Brand Message a Rallying Cry for your Company?

Word Count: 1,436
Estimated Read Time: 5 min.

Part I – Distinguishing between a Tagline, Slogan, Motto and Strapline

Message Matters Most

Companies spend a lot of time and money trying to perfect their brand.  Logo.  Font.  Colors.  Patterns.  Style Guides.  Brand DNAs.  Mission.  Vision.  Brand promises.  Brand differentiators.  For good reason.  In today’s super-crowded global marketplace, it takes powerful branding to cut through the noise.  If your brand is bland, boring or unclear, then it is just that much harder to break through the din, stand out in the crowd and be noticed.  And is nearly impossible to be remembered. Continue reading

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Getting Employees to Board the “Change Train”

Word Count: 1,214
Estimated Read Time: 5 min.

How to Get Employees to Embrace Change

Changes come in all sizes, from minor adjustments to total overhauls.  For businesses, most changes tend to be small, incremental adjustments.  Update the accounting software.  Expand the sales team.  Lease additional space.  Go paperless.  Add social media links to the corporate signature block.  Revise the project management process.   Start blogging.  These changes have an impact, but overall it can be managed through training, technology and time. Continue reading

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Navigating Workplace Negativity

Is there a Negative Nancy, Glum Gus or Pessimistic Peter bringing down your entire workplace?  This negative ninny focuses on the bad to the exclusion of all positive aspects, engaging in “all or nothing” thinking,  blaming others, and allowing anger to cause a breakdown in communication.  This can happen in any work environment.  It can be coming from a supervisor, employee or customer.  These detrimental behaviors can become typical if workplace negativity is allowed to spiral out of control unchecked.

What’s more, a workplace environment that is charged with negative electricity has an adverse effect on every employee. Time is squandered on petty gossip and caustic complaints.  Innovative ideas are shot down by naysayers.  Company loyalty is affected by the negative chatter.  It erodes spirits and quashes enthusiasm.  With a low morale and divided loyalties, it becomes very hard for employees to work together to service their customers.  Thus, consumers are also affected by the decreased productivity brought about through negative attitudes.  It is a workplace behavior that benefits no one. Continue reading

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The Importance of Organizational Confidence

Word Count: 1,653
Estimated Read Time: 6 1/2 min.

Organizational Confidence:  Fact or Myth

Confidence is one of those vague traits that is hard to define but you know when you see it.  It is a characteristic that some have but many others lack.  But, without a doubt, it is a quality everyone desires to have both professionally and personally.  If confidence is an attribute generally associated with people, can companies possess it?   Is there really such a thing as Organizational Confidence? Continue reading

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Why Many Overachievers, Rising Stars and Go Getters feel like Imposters

Word Count: 1,457
Estimated Read Time: 6 min.

Exposing Imposter Syndrome

Imposter Syndrome is a condition experienced secretly — and often with deep fear and shame — by many super stars, high achievers and workaholics.  People who suffer from Imposter Syndrome are plagued with pervasive feelings of insecurity, self-doubt and being unworthy.  Behind a façade of success, they feel like fakes, playacting roles but believing deep down that they lack genuine skill, talent or qualifications.  Inside, they have adopted a ‘fake it ‘til you make it’ attitude, all the while hoping no one will discover “the truth”. Continue reading

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To Develop the Most Successful Business, Embrace Kaizen – Part 2

Word Count: 1,653
Estimated Read Time: 6 ½ min.

Change happens. Change happens in every business or organization, and those changes can either be controlled and guided by the company or are controlled from outside the company.   Of course, it is far better if the company is controlling the changes occurring whenever possible.  Therefore, businesses should not look at change as a negative to endure, but rather a positive to embrace. When a company chooses the changes it makes, and implements them according to their own best interests, it improves and grows the company.  In that way, change is a tool for improvement. Continue reading

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To Develop the Most Successful Business, Embrace Kaizen – Part 1

Word Count: 1,364
Estimated Read Time: 5 ½ min.

Kaizen is the Japanese word for ‘Improvement’.  Generally, it is said that Kai means change and zen means good or better.  But it actually translates roughly into ‘to break apart and investigate’ and ‘to improve upon the existing situation’.  It embraces the idea that even good things can be made better… improved in small ways.[1] Continue reading

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The Butterfly Effect on Business, Part 2

Word Count: 1,947
Estimated Read Time: 8 min.

In Poor Richard’s Almanack[1], Benjamin Franklin once wrote:  ““For the want of a nail, the shoe was lost.
For the want of a shoe, the horse was lost.  For the want of a horse, the rider was lost.  For the want of a rider, the battle was lost.  For the want of a battle, the kingdom was lost.  And all for the want of a horseshoe-nail.”  Franklin — a man of both faith and scientific study — was describing the Butterfly Effect, long before it was demonstrated by a weather algorithm three centuries later.  The Butterfly Effect says that a small action, change or decision can have a broad and profound impact on other things later. Continue reading

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The Butterfly Effect on Business, Part 1

Word Count: 1,579
Estimated Read Time: 6 min.

The marvels of creation attest to the Creator, as it is simply impossible for any human being to have orchestrated all these minute details. Without minimizing this in any way, we will now explore the scientific theory called the Butterfly Effect and how we can apply it to business.

A small part of “Chaos Theory” says that something as small as the flutter of a butterfly’s wing can ultimately cause a typhoon or tornado halfway around the world.  This was dubbed the “butterfly effect.”  At its core, this concept recognizes the sensitive interdependence of conditions in which a small change in one place or system can result in large differences later and even affect other systems. Continue reading

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Elevating Ordinary Moments to Create Extraordinary Experiences for Clients and Employees – Part 1

Word Count: 1,357
Estimated Read Time: 5 ½ min.

Every company and leader is looking for ways to dazzle clients and keep top talent engaged and excited.  They want to ‘add sizzle and gleam to the steak’.  Credit card companies, hotels and airlines offer a proliferation of rewards programs geared to increase customer loyalty.  Corporate gift giving to clients and employees soars during the holiday seasons.   Employee of the month parking spaces, quarterly sales awards, and $ 25 grocery store gift certificates at Thanksgiving – all aimed at making employees feel appreciated and keeping them motivated — are ubiquitous.  Nothing wrong with any of that, but it’s been done a million times.  After a while, it starts to feel a bit stilted, common and uninspired.  There is a halo of tired familiarity around such efforts. Continue reading

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